RHS bans nine overseas high risk Xylella specimens from shows

RHS bans nine overseas high risk Xylella specimens from shows

News - 05 October 2017

BALI received its trade application pack this week, for RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2018, and an accompanying 'Stop Press' notification was included from the RHS, detailing how it will be banning nine overseas high risk Xylella specimens from the event, and all subsequent shows throughout the 2018 season. Exhibitors have been warned that only British-grown hebe, rosemary, oleander, olives, lavender, polygala, coffee, Spanish broom and prunus will be allowed.

In the letter, the RHS confirmed the nine species would be "propagated from seed in the UK or having been grown in the UK for a minimum 12 months preceding their use in an RHS show".

Industry professionals who support RHS shows, including landscape contractors, garden designers and suppliers, will now be left wondering how the ban will also affect those plants that may have already been purchased by designers, in anticipation for next year's events, and, whether the RHS intends to issue further advice on what they should do in such a scenario and whether this could instigate a plant premium, which some organisations are already muting. 

Xylella fastidiosa is a bacterium, which has the potential to cause disease in a particularly wide range of woody plants, prompting fears from UK nurseries, and the wider landscaping industry, that all imported stock may have to be screened to prevent Xylella. This could have an adverse effect on UK plant sourcing and selection, as well as implications on the country's bio-security measures.

BALI Registered Affiliate member, Provender Nurseries, are hosting a free-to-attend industry event on the 17 October, at their nursery in Swanley, Kent, regarding Xylella and the impact this could have on UK bio security and the future of plant health. You can book your places now here.

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